Jan 11, 2023 - Economy & Business

Remembering Blake Hounshell, a journalistic force

Mike Allen
Blake Hounshell speaks in New York last year.

Blake Hounshell speaks in New York last year. Photo: Riccardo Savi/Getty Images

Blake Hounshell — an influential online national-security voice who was a top editor at Foreign Policy and Politico before joining the New York Times to write the "On Politics" newsletter — died yesterday at 44.

  • His family said he died "after a long and courageous battle with depression," leaving a wife, Sandy, and two children.

I worked closely with Blake at Politico, and treasured our weekend Au Bon Pain seances in Georgetown. Blake was a pioneer in a business where there are lots of sheep.

  • He was early to grasp the power of a personal voice and sensibility online, and created a Twitter community that any news organization would envy.
  • Blake was gifted as both an editor and a writer, with crossover talents that are so very, very rare. And he was always something much more important — a great guy and dad.

The Atlantic's Tim Alberta, who worked for Blake at Politico, tweeted about their time together: "Six years ago, I had to tell my new boss something. I was dealing with sudden onset of panic disorder — ferocious, debilitating anxiety. ... 'Want to compare notes?' he asked me. So we did."

  • "We'd start every work-related conversation by trading stories about our respective struggles. I started to improve. And my new boss was a big reason why."
  • "[W]e started churning out hits together at Politico Mag ... He never took any credit, but he deserved all of it."

Read Garrett Graff for Politico, "In Remembrance of a Beloved and Very Online Journalist: Blake Hounshell loved great scoops, pithy framing and a sharp tweet. In fact, he would have made this headline much better."

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